One of the many baseless and false accusations fabricated to accuse Eritrea was that “weapons originating from Eritrea were found in with Somali warlords.” And the serial numbers of the weapons supposedly found in the hands of the warlords were presented to the monitoring group as evidence. “We have asked and confirmed that Russia previously sold the weapons to Eritrea,” the group had said.
At first, any naive party could be convinced by these facts. Even the Russians were forced to refer back to their documents, and, obviously, verified that the serial numbers in fact corresponded with their records.
When the serial numbers written in an unofficial paper were presented as evidence, the Government of Eritrea also checked its records. And the numbers exactly corresponded. The question that arises next is thus “How did the weapons go to Somalia or its warlord?” Careful investigations confirmed that the said weapons were still in the Eritrean arsenal.
The question that came next was “If the weapons were still in Eritrea, how did the accusers get hold of the serial numbers?” Only later did the answer come to light.
During the Bush Administration, the then Secretary of State Collin Powell and his Russian counterpart had made an agreement, in a bid to control terrorism, to exchange a list of all the arms, including their serial numbers, that both countries sold to all states. Accordingly, the US gave the information to Russia and the latter reciprocated. Not having recalled this episode, the Russians believed the accusations against Eritrea when presented with documentary evidence of the serial numbers. Once the Government of Eritrea made sure that it still possessed the weapons in question however, the Russians were compelled to think back and realize that the numbers were actually taken from the list they had handed over to the CIA. And in the course of these investigations, the co-conspirators profited from the time to deceive multiple naive sides.
Eritrea’s historic belligerents, who have set out to make it the victim of their failures, left no stone unturned to tarnish the image of the people and Government of Eritrea. But as the saying goes “The truth will out,” all their efforts have gone in vain. And with every truth revealed, their integrity and credibility weakens, eventually leading to the downfall of their influences.